CHENNAI: People of this country reposed enormous faith in judiciary. Any document bearing the seal of the court is taken as a true one and the contents as Gospel truth, the Madras High Court has observed. A shocked Justice S Nagamuthu made this observation after coming to know that a fraud had been played on a lower court in Tiruvannamalai for obtaining its seal of approval for sale of two valuable properties, by impersonation and forging of documents.
Vanitha Jayapal owned two properties, one measuring 2,580 sq.ft. in Manakula Vijayagar Koil Street in Tiruvannamalai town and the other measuring 1,600 sq.ft. in the same survey number. After entrusting the documents with her husband’s friend Bret Carlson, she had left for the USA in 1999. When she returned in September this year, she found the encumbrance certificate showed the properties as having been sold to Hohm Sahaj Trust, represented by one R Raman Lal. She came to know that a sale agreement was prepared by forging her signature and a civil suit was filed by the Trust before the local Subordinate Court against her.
A woman, claiming to be Vanitha, impersonated her in court proceedings. An advocate by name V Gopalasamy Rao, who appeared for plaintiff, pitted his junior RG Srinivasan to defend the opposite party. The conspiracy ended in the court affixing its seal of approval for the sale deed in February last. Contending that a fraud had been played on the court, petitioner Vanitha lodged a police complaint on September 12 last and later moved the High Court with the present writ petition.
Considering junior advocate Srinivasan’s innocence, inexperience and young age and that he had carried his senior instructions, Justice Nagamuthu let him off the case and directed Raman Lal to hand over vacant possession of the properties to Vanitha forthwith. Holding that it was absolutely necessary for the court to issue a direction to police to register a case on the complaint alleging heinous crime, the judge directed the SP, T’Malai Land Grabbing Cell to register a case on Vanitha’s complaint against unknown accused, investigate the same and punish the culprits.